AP Psych Unit 2

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112 Terms

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nervous system

the body's speedy, electrochemical communication network, consisting of all the nerve cells of the peripheral and central nervous systems

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central nervous system

brain and spinal cord

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peripheral nervous system

the sensory and motor neurons that connect the central nervous system to the rest of the body

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EEG

An amplified recording of the waves of electrical activity that sweep across the brain's surface. These waves are measured by electrodes placed on the scalp.

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CT scan

a series of x-ray photographs taken from different angles and combined by computer into a composite representation of a slice through the body

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PET scan

a visual display of brain activity that detects where a radioactive form of glucose goes while the brain performs a given task

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MRI

a technique that uses magnetic fields and radio waves to produce computer-generated images that distinguish among different types of soft tissue; allows us to see structures within the brain

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somatic nervous system

the division of the peripheral nervous system that controls the body's skeletal muscles

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motor neurons

neurons that carry outgoing information from the brain and spinal cord to the muscles and glands

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sensory neurons

neurons that carry incoming information from the sensory receptors to the brain and spinal cord

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automatic nervous system

the part of the peripheral nervous system that controls the glands and the muscles of the internal organs (such as the heart). Its sympathetic division arouses; its parasympathetic division calms.

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sympathetic nervous system

the division of the autonomic nervous system that arouses the body, mobilizing its energy in stressful situations

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parasympathetic nervous system

the division of the autonomic nervous system that calms the body, conserving its energy

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Neurons

a nerve cell; the basic building block of the nervous system

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Soma

cell body

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Dendrites

Branchlike parts of a neuron that are specialized to receive information.

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Axons

Carry impulses away from the cell body

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myelin sheath

A layer of fatty tissue segmentally encasing the fibers of many neurons; enables vastly greater transmission speed of neural impulses as the impulse hops from one node to the next.

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Synapse

the junction between the axon tip of the sending neuron and the dendrite or cell body of the receiving neuron

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Neurotransmitters

chemical messengers that cross the synaptic gaps between neurons

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action potential

a neural impulse; a brief electrical charge that travels down an axon

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sodium-potassium pump

a carrier protein that uses ATP to actively transport sodium ions out of a cell and potassium ions into the cell

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Reuptake

a neurotransmitter's reabsorption by the sending neuron

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inhibition

a feeling that makes one self-conscious and unable to act in a relaxed and natural way

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Agonist

a molecule that, by binding to a receptor site, stimulates a response

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Antagonist

Does not mimic neurochemicals and blocks neural pathways

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endocrine system

the body's "slow" chemical communication system; a set of glands that secrete hormones into the bloodstream

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adrenal glands

a pair of endocrine glands that sit just above the kidneys and secrete hormones (epinephrine and norepinephrine) that help arouse the body in times of stress.

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Pancreas

Regulates the level of sugar in the blood

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Thyroid

regulates metabolism

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pituitary gland

The endocrine system's most influential gland. Under the influence of the hypothalamus, the pituitary regulates growth and controls other endocrine glands.

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testes and ovaries

reproductive hormones

(endocrine system)

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33

dual processing

the principle that information is often simultaneously processed on separate conscious and unconscious tracks

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frontal lobe

A region of the cerebral cortex that has specialized areas for movement, abstract thinking, planning, memory, and judgement

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association areas

areas of the cerebral cortex that are not involved in primary motor or sensory functions; rather, they are involved in higher mental functions such as learning, remembering, thinking, and speaking

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Phineas Gage

railroad worker who survived a severe brain injury that dramatically changed his personality and behavior; case played a role in the development of the understanding of the localization of brain function

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Prosopagnosia

inability to recognize faces

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feature receptors

nerve cells in the brain that respond to specific features of the stimulus, such as shape, angle, or movement

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hemispheric specialization

The control of distinct neurological functions by the right and left hemispheres of the brain.

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brain lateralization

specialization of function in each hemisphere

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corpus callosum

the large band of neural fibers connecting the two brain hemispheres and carrying messages between them

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Plasticity

the brain's ability to change, especially during childhood, by reorganizing after damage or by building new pathways based on experience

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neurogenesis

the formation of new neurons

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44

Epigenetics

the study of environmental influences on gene expression that occur without a DNA change

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45

Broca's area

Controls language expression - an area of the frontal lobe, usually in the left hemisphere, that directs the muscle movements involved in speech.

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Wernicke's area

controls language reception - a brain area involved in language comprehension and expression; usually in the left temporal lobe

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Gazzinga

Split brain research

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Sperry

split brain in mice - two hemispheres seemed to learn despite being separated

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vision

the ability to see

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Transduction

conversion of one form of energy into another. In sensation, the transforming of stimulus energies, such as sights, sounds, and smells, into neural impulses our brains can interpret.

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51

Cornea

The clear tissue that covers the front of the eye

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pupil

the adjustable opening in the center of the eye through which light enters

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lens

the transparent structure behind the pupil that changes shape to help focus images on the retina

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Fovea

the central focal point in the retina, around which the eye's cones cluster

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Retina

the light-sensitive inner surface of the eye, containing the receptor rods and cones plus layers of neurons that begin the processing of visual information

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Rods

retinal receptors that detect black, white, and gray; necessary for peripheral and twilight vision, when cones don't respond

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Cones

retinal receptor cells that are concentrated near the center of the retina and that function in daylight or in well-lit conditions. The cones detect fine detail and give rise to color sensations.

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bipolar cells

eye neurons that receive information from the retinal cells and distribute information to the ganglion cells

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ganglion cells

their axons form the optic nerve

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Thalamus

the brain's sensory switchboard, located on top of the brainstem; it directs messages to the sensory receiving areas in the cortex and transmits replies to the cerebellum and medulla

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perceptual constancy

perceiving objects as unchanging even as illumination and retinal images change

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parallel processing

the processing of many aspects of a problem simultaneously; the brain's natural mode of information processing for many functions, including vision. Contrasts with the step-by-step (serial) processing of most computers and of conscious problem solving.

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trichromatic theory

theory of color vision that proposes three types of cones: red, blue, and green

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opponent-process theory

the theory that opposing retinal processes (red-green, yellow-blue, white-black) enable color vision. For example, some cells are stimulated by green and inhibited by red; others are stimulated by red and inhibited by green

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audition

the sense or act of hearing

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66

hammer

A tiny bone that passes vibrations from the eardrum to the anvil

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anvil

A tiny bone that passes vibrations from the hammer to the stirrup

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stirrup

A tiny U shaped bone that passes vibrations from the anvil to the cochlea.

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cochlea

a coiled, bony, fluid-filled tube in the inner ear through which sound waves trigger nerve impulses

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basilar membrane

A structure that runs the length of the cochlea in the inner ear and holds the auditory receptors, called hair cells.

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place theory

in hearing, the theory that links the pitch we hear with the place where the cochlea's membrane is stimulated

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frequency theory

in hearing, the theory that the rate of nerve impulses traveling up the auditory nerve matches the frequency of a tone, thus enabling us to sense its pitch

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Amplitude

Height of a wave

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Frequency

the number of complete wavelengths that pass a point in a given time

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75

Olfaction

sense of smell

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nasal cavity

nose

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77

olfactory bulb

a brain structure located above the nasal cavity beneath the frontal lobes

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78

kinethesis

the system for sensing the position and movement of individual body parts

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vestibular sacs

organs in the inner ear that connect the semicircular canals and the cochlea and contribute to the body's sense of balance

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semicircular canals

three canals within the inner ear that contain specialized receptor cells that generate nerve impulses with body movement

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81

touch

pressure, pain, temperature

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82

pain

an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage

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83

Noniceptors

sensory receptors that detect hurtful temperatures, pressure, or chemicals

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84

gate-control theory

the theory that the spinal cord contains a neurological "gate" that blocks pain signals or allows them to pass on to the brain. The "gate" is opened by the activity of pain signals traveling up small nerve fibers and is closed by activity in larger fibers or by information coming from the brain.

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85

phantom limbs

misleading "sensations" from missing limbs

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86

empathy

the ability to understand and share the feelings of another

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87

embodied cognition

in psychological science, the influence of bodily sensations, gestures, and other states on cognitive preferences and judgments

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taste

the sensation of flavor perceived in the mouth and throat on contact with a substance.

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psychological influences

learned fears and other learned expectations, emotional responses, cognitive processing and perceptual interpretations

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Sensory Disorders

visual and hearing impairments

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91

color blindness

a variety of disorders marked by inability to distinguish some or all colors

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92

sensorineural

permanent hearing loss that results from damage or malformation of the middle ear and auditory nerve

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conductive loss

hearing loss resulting from damage to the outer or middle ear

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94

Fechner

psychophysics

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95

difference threshold

the minimum difference between two stimuli required for detection 50 percent of the time

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96

signal detection

this theory predicts how and in what circumstances we can detect a stimulus; assumes there is no single threshold

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subliminal messages

brief auditory or visual messages that are presented below the absolute threshold

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bottom-up processing

analysis that begins with the sensory receptors and works up to the brain's integration of sensory information

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top-down processing

information processing guided by higher-level mental processes, as when we construct perceptions drawing on our experience and expectations

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selective attention

the focusing of conscious awareness on a particular stimulus

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